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The Guide to a Successful Sales Pitch at a Trade Fair

9 Apr 2019

The chief reason companies attend a trade fair or an exhibition is to sell their products. Yes, there is talk about learning industry news, gaining additional professional qualifications and raising the company’s profile through participation in the support program, but these are all secondary to the importance of selling products and services.

It would be positively sinful to let the opportunity slip through your fingers. Drive those sales and position yourself better in your market. That’s how you survive in any industry, but it’s not as easy as setting up a stand and calling it a day. You have to know how to sell and this brings us to the one element that’s INTEGRAL to your success at any trade event – the sales pitch.

What Is a Sales Pitch? – The Essential Question

It’s a tool as old as marketing. The sales pitch is marketing distilled to its very essence – the trigger when pulled instills absolute trust in your product and secures a buyer in seconds. It’s the tool that convinces a trade visitor what you’re offering is the only right choice for them. In an online format, that’s your website, the content you offer and visuals. In an offline environment, the sales pitch is short and to the point.

Sales pitches should be:

  • Concise – the first eight seconds are crucial, so you want to capture the imagination and the attention of a potential buyer within that time frame.
  • Balanced – you don’t want to distract the buyer with too much information, so stick to the main two to three key points that make your product worth their while.
  • Practiced – you want to put in some practice into what you’re going to say at the trade fair so that you don’t come off as unsure of what your product’s strengths are.
  • Natural – at the same time, you don’t want to sound robotic, which can happen with too much practice. Also, if your sales pitch comes out flat and rehearsed, you appear dishonest.
  • Helpful – the reason why anyone buys anything is because they have a problem that needs solving and your sales pitch should identify a problem, which it then solves.

You have to understand one thing: conferences, trade shows, exhibitions – they are created for this purpose and you’re one of the hundreds of people throwing sales pitches around wanting to get heard.

Make sure you stand out!

It All Begins with the Right Kind of Research

Know your customers. It’s as simple as that. You need to know why your customers prefer you to other companies. What makes you different? Once you have the answers, it’s easy to craft a pitch that’s both effective and truthful, because you have gone to a trusted source - your own client base. You might be somewhat confused as to how to get this information. You don’t know who’s going to attend every single event and what they need.

What you can do though is turn to your most loyal and your most recent customers. These groups present you with information on the following subjects:

  • What attracted you to our company?
  • Why did you buy our products?
  • What are the biggest strength of the product?
  • What should be improved in the product?
  • Why did you commit to our brand time and time again?

In all honesty, you should be doing this actively anyway so that you can evolve as a business, but even if it’s not on your agenda right now, it should be before you attend a trade show.

Your Team Is the Heart of the Operation

Exhibiting at a trade fair is not a one-man mission. Even if you’re the main driving force behind all the sales efforts, you should have your team prepared to fulfill that function at any moment. At a trade event, every single person at your trade stand is your brand ambassador, even if their job is to stock promotional products and handle tech support.

Sooner or later, they will strike up a chance conversation with a potential customer and they need to be prepared to do your product justice. To that end, each person you select for your team needs to have enough experience with the product or service. They need to know how it works and what’s its value so that they can give you additional support with the sales effort.

You might be tempted to teach everyone your sales pitch, but that only limits your entire team. The best way to land successful sales pitches as a group is to have each team member work out a sales pitch in their own communication style. That way you seem legitimate and organic in front of potential buyers, who might overhear more than one person talk about your product. You want to make a strong, professional impression and that includes being a human being first and foremost.

In person, you have to go in a roundabout way to reach the moment of sale. How you come across is stronger than what you’re saying. Take this into account when you make a new contact and start a new conversation. No one wants to talk to soulless salespeople. No one wants to hear the same rehearsed sales pitch parroted over and over.

The true genius of a really effective sales pitch is to engineer it, plan it and practice it just so that it doesn’t even resemble one.

And that’s how you craft a successful sales pitch.

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